When it comes to women, I’m clueless. I know because my wife says so. Nonetheless, as inept as I’ve proven myself with the fair sex, I’ve more than met my match with Stan. He’s a lawyer I know through a local bar association and from the continuing legal education class he teaches. I’ve pegged him as a decent looking, intelligent and articulate guy, with a sense of humor to boot. Add a successful legal practice, and it’s hard to believe he’s failed so miserably in the dating world; yet he has.
At yesterday’s monthly bar meeting, Stan informed me that his divorce finally went through, and he’s begun dating again for the first time in twenty years. He’s using an internet matchmaking service to meet women. He says the “meeting” part’s been a snap, but reaching a second date has not. At this point, he’s 0 for 7 in that department.
Having suffered more than my fair share of online matchmaking fiascos, I volunteered to review Stan’s methods and point out any obvious mistakes. We returned to his office after lunch, where he showed me his internet dating profile and the e-mails he’d exchanged thus far. Because his paper trail looked clean, I asked him to take me through his most recent outing, in hopes I might identify a blatant gaff.
By the time Stan’s recitation of his dinner meeting reached dessert, I’d still seen no smoking gun. He insisted there was mutual interest and that all signs pointed toward a second rendezvous, just like his get-togethers with previous women. I couldn’t dispute his analysis either. Baffled, I interrupted him: “I don’t get it. At what point did you learn she wouldn’t see you again?”
He matter-of-factly replied: “I didn’t have a clue until I read her survey.”
I thought I’d misheard him. “Did you say ‘survey,’ Stan?”
“That’s right. I use surveys for my CLE course, and I find them extremely helpful for teaching. As I figured, they’d work equally well in evaluating my dates.”
At my request, Stan showed me the form he’d asked each woman to complete. It contained ratings from one through five in various categories, including: physical appearance; conversational skills; demeanor; sense of humor; common interests; and, of course, her desire for a second date. The survey also included a “comments” section where the lady could scribble her overall impressions of Stan and their time together. According to him, none of the comments listed by his last prospect, or any of the prior ones, had been complimentary.
I’d apparently located the smoking gun. What I couldn’t figure was why any of those women would even consent to fill out Stan’s survey. Yet he had a ready explanation there too: “Well, they all balked at first; however, when I reminded them I was paying for dinner and that the least they could do was fill out a simple form, they all jumped at the chance.”
A helpful feedback tool, if one is willing to complete it